Best Time to Visit DL

Discussion in 'Disneyland (California)' started by mickeyplanner, Dec 28, 2011.

  1. mickeyplanner

    mickeyplanner DIS Veteran

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    WE received our 2012 disney vacation video and our kids now keep asking to go to Disneyland. We have never been there but have been to WDW numerous times and I love planning out those trips...that is how I found the Dis.
    When are the best times of year to visit DL. We would typically think about going in January, May, September or October. Any insiders tips we should consider when making that decision?
    Also where would you recommend staying? We are in the process of becoming DVC members if Disney approves the resale contract we are trying to buy. SHould we try to stay at the Grand California on points?
    How does dining work? It doesn't seem like there is a dining plan option like at WDW.
    Also how mamy days would you recommend? We typically vist wdw for a week at a time. Would that be too much time at DL?

    Thank you for any helpful advice you can provide and Happy New Year.
     
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  3. loveysbydesign

    loveysbydesign I can pinch a penny so hard you can hear it scream

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    I would love to know the answer to this as well. We have never been to DL and since we will be traveling from the East Coast it will probably be more costly then traveling to WDW. Want to make sure we are getting our moneys worth by going when the crowds are low and weather is great!

    I would also like to know where the cheapest, but nicest place is to stay with 2 adults and 3 kids.
     
  4. KCmike

    KCmike Never have fallen asleep on any

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    The best time to go to see everything is Summer (mid June to August), Halloween or Christmas. All rides, fireworks, and other entertainment is going on at that time. Its a trade off to go when the crowds are at their highest level but you get to take in all that Disneyland has to offer. Carsland opens this summer and its sure to be chaos from mid june on. The weather is always great so that isn't usually an issue. Be forwarned though that its usually cool in the mornings, gorgeous in the afternoons and then cool again in the evenings. It feels like fall to us here in KC. We always end up changing into hoodies and jeans when we head back to the parks at night. We love that!

    Best bang for your buck hotel *mickeyplanner* would be HOJO. It is a very easy walk to the parks from there and they always have great rates. I personally love staying on the resort because I don't like walking down a busy harbor blvd.

    Disneyland is simply the best park and this is coming from a WDW vet. It is very different though. It feels like a local amusement park in the fact that its surrounded by urban sprawl. Once inside though the magic simply takes over. The nostalgia is everywhere and you can truly feel Walt's presence. If your a true fan of Walt it will give you goosebumps.

    So much to tell you. Keep asking questions as everyone here is very nice. This thread is a great start in learning everything about Disneyland for WDW vets.
    Hydroguy has written this wonderful thread for you.
    http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1162599
     
  5. starshine514

    starshine514 DIS Veteran

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    First, read Hydroguy's guide: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1162599

    Pay special attention to the season link: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=36509602

    Personally, I like the off-season (loved our early November trip this year). However, hours are short and refurbs happen this. This isn't a big deal if you're going back, but if this is a possibly once-in-a-lifetime trip, it would suck to miss Pirates or Screamin' or whatnot because of a refurb.

    I haven't stayed on property at DL, but if I had the means, the GCH is supposed to be really nice!

    I would say 3-4 days would be a good amount of time.
     
  6. HydroGuy

    HydroGuy DIS Veteran

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    You do not necessarily get your money's worth at DLR when crowds are lowest. Hours are shorter and entertainment is reduced and rides are closed for refurb during off-season. For some people that is OK. For others it is not.

    Do your homework before deciding what is best for you. It looks like others have already given you this link:

    "Choosing When To Visit DLR: Summary of High and Low Season and When Each Happens" www.disboards.com/showthread.php?p=36509602

    :wizard:
     
  7. loveysbydesign

    loveysbydesign I can pinch a penny so hard you can hear it scream

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    How hot and busy is it in mid-august???(compared to WDW);)
     
  8. disneyfaninaz

    disneyfaninaz It takes faith, trust & pixie dust!

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    DL can be hot in August, but you don't get the humidity. It may still cool down a bit at night. However, it can still be quite busy until school starts in August, especially the weekends.
     
  9. loveysbydesign

    loveysbydesign I can pinch a penny so hard you can hear it scream

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    Well, maybe what we'll do is put the DL trip off til 2013...that way Carsland won't be so new and then we could go in June once the kids are out of school. Plus then it would be warm enough to go to the beach. We generally prefer to travel to WDW in Nov. when it is much less busy and cooler....but by that time my oldest will be in highschool and I'm not sure I'll be able to pull him out of school anymore :confused3 I know we do want to visit after CL opens as my 4 y.o. is a HUGE Cars fan!
     
  10. HydroGuy

    HydroGuy DIS Veteran

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    Temperatures are lower and humidity much lower. In general DLR in the summer is much more tolerable than WDW in the summer.

    "Comparison of Weather For WDW and DLR" www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1711098

    Crowds in August would be comparable. Be aware that things can change after about August 20 due to AP blockouts lifting.
     
  11. Maddysdaddy

    Maddysdaddy DIS Veteran

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    We love to go at the end of Sept/beginning of October. Weather is perfect (keep in mind we're Canadian, so anything over 70 is a 'shorts' day), lines are super short, hotels are on off-season rates, and the park has its Halloween decorations up.
     
  12. cindyland

    cindyland Mouseketeer

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    Be careful in June. A lot of local schools send buses of junior high age kids to the parks for end of year trips. Also, the weather is less than ideal, often overcast and cool, we ended up going to a nearby outlet and buying jackets for everybody (which wasn't really a bad thing). Weather in October can be very hot, warmer than summer. Love May before things get crazy, and the autumn decorations in late October are great. Have fun planning!
     
  13. pinkprincess30

    pinkprincess30 I may be addicted!

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    May was GREAT crowd-wise. On Mother's Day (a Sunday) it was practically a ghost town until 1 or 2 pm, and then pretty light in the evening. The longest we stood in line was 20 minutes, and we saw all the rides/shows at DLR & CA at least twice in 4 days. BUT there were a LOT of refurbs going on, including Splash Mtn., Star Tours, ALL parades, and a LOT of attractions in California Adventure.

    When we go again, I would be really conflicted, because DH does NOT like crowds, but we definitely don't want to deal with so many closures. I think October sounds like a good time to go!
     

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